Did you know… Over €32 million worth of cigarettes was seized by Revenue in Drogheda Port last week? 4’500 kgs of water-pipe tobacco with an estimated street value of €14 million was captured along with the haul making it the largest seizure in Europe so far this year. The transporting cargo vessel, the MV Shingle, was also seized during the raid. Officers from the Revenue’s customs service supported by Gardai targeted the operation believed to be the work of an international organised crime group headed up by Irish and UK nationals and based in Europe.
Did you know… Aramark Ireland and Flora Buttery have teamed up for for National Cupcake Week 2014? The week begins on Monday, June 30th and runs until Friday, July 4th. Aramark and Flora Buttery will be selling cupcakes at their food services sites in aid of Aramark’s Charitable Fund’s four nationwide charities for this year: GIY (Grow it Yourself), Children’s Heartbeat Trust, St Patrick’s Mental Health Foundation and Galway Hospice. Each cupcake will be made with Flora Buttery, containing 72% less saturated fat compared to butter. Aramark is also encouraging others to host their own cupcake party to raise additional funds for their Charitable Fund.
Did you know… Almost three quarters of children (74%) are interested in where their food comes from? According to a survey by Kelloggs children are curious about food sources, but this is an area that most are confused by. Richard Burkinshaw, Project Manager of the Kellogg’s Origins Programme says, “A lot of kids didn’t realise that their breakfast cereal was made from grains that grew in a field.” He said that many children believe their food comes form a supermarket and have no idea of the processes that go into making it consumer ready. According to the research, 39% of children have never visited a farm that grows food but two-thirds (65%) say that they would like to. To help educate kids, Kellogs have teamed up with the National Schools Partnership to develop a new teaching aid for teachers to inspire children from 300 primary schools across the UK and Ireland to learn about their food and where it comes from.
Did you know… Nutella is to launch a new product called Nutella & Go?The new product innovation will be introduced to the UK and Irish markets by Ferrero this August, following its success in the USA, France and Germany. Nutella & GO is a portable snack pack with nutella hazelnut and cocoa spread on one side and crunchy breadsticks for dipping on the other. Levi Boorer, Customer Development Director, Ferrero commented on the launch, “Offering a new and interesting way to enjoy nutella – providing excitement, great taste and fun on-the-go, Nutella & Go is set to drive incremental sales and category growth, recreating the success it has already enjoyed in other markets.” The product will be on sale with an RRP of 99 cent and is targeted at teens and young adults. In July, the brand will be building anticipation around the launch on Nutella’s Facebook page, creating excitement amongst its core consumers.
Did you know… SME loans are now in default of over €9 billion? This is as a result of 40% of outstanding SME debt at the bailed-out banks now in long term-term arrears, according to research from the Central Bank of Ireland. The SME sector makes up about 99% of businesses in the company, which shows the extent of the debt problem facing home-grown businesses in Ireland. The report also showed that loans to small business across AIB, Bank of Ireland, Permanent TSB and EBS totalled €21 billion in December, with an average loan size of €71,101. The default rate on the debt was 26.05%, with the default rate on the balance hitting 41.38%. It was also revealed that lending to SMEs has been gradually falling since 2011.
Did you know… Retailers rejected the proposals from Minister for Health, James Reilly, to introduce a new tobacco licensing system? Representatives from retailer groups CSNA, RGDATA, Retail Excellence Ireland and ISME support this rejection saying that it amounts to a new tax. There are 13,500 tobacco retailers currently registered in Ireland. 7,500 of these are hotels, clubs and pubs that could not be considered to sell tobacco as a core product within their businesses, and would be unlikely to continue to register if the cost of the annual fee exceeded the profit earned from sales,according to the retail groups. The Department of Health has suggested that all existing retailers would be required to pay a fee that would net €5m per annum.
Did you know… Topaz awarded one of its customers with a new car? The service station brand gave Gabor Petranyi a brand new Yaris 1.0L for entering Topaz’s Play or Park loyalty game for May. The overall package includes free fuel for a year and amounts to €20K. Play or Park is a loyalty game from Topaz that gives customers the opportunity to win monthly Experiences of a Lifetime each time that they play their points, as well as get rewarded with a free Topaz Treat each month that they play. Customers must register for a Game tag to start collecting points on their purchases in store.
Did you know… Shake Up 50+, the daily protein drink producer is running a charitable donation for July? BR Foods, the over-50’s drink supplier will donate €1 back to the Irish Osteoporosis Society on all special offer packs sold during this period. This will help the organisation highlight and educate the seriousness of this silent disease that affects over 300,000 people in Ireland. One in two women and one in four men over the age of 50 will fracture a bone due to Osteoporosis and children can also be affected. Professor Moira O’Brien, who is the founder and President of the Irish Osteoporosis Society was happy to discuss the benefits of the Shake Up 50+ drink saying, “Shake up 50+ is a shake that contains calcium, vitamin D3 and protein and is diabetic friendly and gluten free. Calcium, vitamin D3 and protein are essential for healthy bones.” Made in Ireland using Irish Whey Protein, the product comes in a premium 250g pouch (RRP €10.99).
Did you know… A batch of Blackfriars Fruit Flapjacks has been recalled according to the Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI). The product may may contain milk protein, which is not declared on the label. This may make this batch unsafe for consumers who are allergic to or intolerant of milk or its constituents. The batch in question is: Blackfriars Fruit Flapjack; best before date: 27 November, 2014; pack size: 110g.